Knicks grind out a W against resilient Grizzlies
In a night where the depleted Memphis Grizzlies displayed unyielding resilience, the New York Knicks had to put in the hard yards to secure a victory, closing the game at 106-94.
Julius Randle once again led the way, recording a double-double with 24 points and 11 rebounds. Miles McBride, filling in for the injured Jalen Brunson, had a career-high performance with 19 points, shooting an impressive 7-10 from the field, including 4-7 from beyond the arc. OG Anunoby finished the night with 18 points.
The Grizzlies faced significant challenges with key players suspended or injured. Ja Morant, Marcus Smart, Steven Adams, Brandon Clarke, Derrick Rose, Desmond Bane, and Jaren Jackson Jr. were all absent in different capacities. Despite this, the Grizzlies fought relentlessly for two and a half quarters.
GG Jackson scored 20 points off the bench, while Vince Williams Jr contributed 17 points. Luke Kennard and David Toddy each added 14 points to Memphis’ effort.
Grizzlies managed to force the Knicks into committing 23 turnovers, while holding themselves to just 12. Randle alone had 6. The game saw tight moments, with Memphis leading 57-51 shortly before halftime and initiating the game with an 8-2 run.
“You’ve got to give the Grizzlies credit, too. I thought they were really active. We didn’t adjust — they were coming at the ball pretty good and we held onto it. And then usually a result of trying to thread the needle or too much one on one instead of driving it, spraying it. And so part that and part adjusting.”
– Tom Thibodeau
Malachi Flynn, the overlooked player acquired in the Anunoby trade, emerged as a pleasant surprise. He contributed nine points and three assists in just 10 minutes of play during the first half. Isaiah Hartenstein played a significant role, recording an impressive 20 rebounds, including seven offensive boards, and scoring 12 points in 42 minutes of play.
The Knicks took control later in the third quarter, going on a 10-0 run to secure an 81-69 lead. Although they couldn’t build a substantial lead, with the largest being 91-77 early in the fourth, it was enough to keep the Grizzlies at bay.
The win against the Grizzlies marked a significant milestone for coach Tom Thibodeau, securing his 500th career victory. The Knicks, continuing their dominance against teams with losing records, now stand at 16-1 in such matchups.
Up-next: The Knicks (23-16) will move to Orlando on Monday to take on the Magic (21-18) in an early game from 3:00 pm